Worthless to release Taliban inmates yet again: NSC

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KABUL: The Afghan National Security Council (NSC) on Tuesday said the release of Taliban prisoners would not help to expedite the Afghan peace process.


NSC Spokesman Rahmatullah Andar stated liberating 5,500 prisoners didn’t achieve the expected results, but rather the Afghan government came under severe criticism for the move.


“Unfortunately, the promise to reduce violence wasn’t honored and the released inmates didn’t abandon insurgency and went on to join the battlegrounds.”


The remarks come as the US Chargé d’Affaires Ross Wilson recently revealed that the Taliban had demanded the release of around 7,000 of their convicts by mid-December, as part of the US-Taliban agreement signed in February. 


“The specific provision relating to another 7,000 Taliban prisoners is contained in the US-Taliban agreement,” Wilson, explaining the provisions of the US-Taliban deal were interlinked and if other terms of the pact weren’t adhered to, the prisoner release was also not applicable.


Members of the lower house of parliament also expressed concern regarding the potential release of another 7,000 Taliban inmates, saying prisoner swap should be tied to a ceasefire and headway in peace talks.